darren.chester.mp@aph.gov.au 1300 131 785
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April 5, 2012

Federal Opposition Leader Tony Abbott has spent time inspecting health facilities in Orbost at Orbost Regional Health (ORH) with Chief Executive Officer Therese Tierney and ORH Board Members.

Mr Abbott was asked to tour ORH, which was named ‘Rural Health Service of the Year’ at the Victorian Public Healthcare Awards last year, by Federal Member for Gippsland Darren Chester.

Mr Chester said the tour was a good opportunity to show Mr Abbott, who was a Health Minister in the Howard Government, around one of Victoria’s highest achieving regional hospitals.

“Tony has a tremendous amount of knowledge of issues in the health sector having held the portfolio in government for four years,” Mr Chester said.

“The visit was a good opportunity to show him how ORH is leading the state in terms of health service delivery in a rural setting.

“The staff and board were very welcoming and appreciated the chance to brief Tony on their plans and also issues that smaller regional hospitals may encounter in the future.”

Mr Chester said quality health service delivery remained a critical issue in rural and regional communities.

“The provision of quality healthcare is critical for people living in rural and regional communities where often there is only one service available,” Mr Chester said.

“Having a quality service and follow-up care means many residents can remain in their community for longer and reassures local residents that there is help available when health issues arise suddenly.”

Mr Chester is a big supporter of ORH and said the high quality services provided at the facility were a testament to the work of the staff, board and volunteers.

“The local community plays a big part in supporting the staff and board at ORH to make sure that there are quality health services available to Orbost and district residents,” Mr Chester said.

“It is no easy feat to improve health service delivery in small communities and everyone at ORH is to be commended on the exceptional job they are doing.”

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